News Column

Alico Inc. earnings grow in second quarter

May 7, 2014

Naples Daily News, Fla.



May 07--Alico Inc. reported higher profits for its fiscal second quarter.

In the quarter ending March 31, the Fort Myers-based grower and land manager saw its earnings grow to $4.1 million, or 55 cents a share. That was up from $2.7 million, or 38 cents a share, a year ago.

The company owns about 130,800 acres in six Florida counties: Alachua, Collier, Glades, Hendry, Lee and Polk. Its operations include citrus and sugarcane production, cattle ranching, land conservation and rock mining.

While profits rose in the quarter, total operating revenue fell 2.4 percent to $37.5 million, down from $38.4 million a year ago. The year-over-year revenue decline was attributed primarily to lower sales seen in its agricultural supply chain management segment, due to fewer boxes of fruit sold.

The company saw revenue gains both in its sugarcane and citrus grove operations.

Revenue from its citrus groves rose more than 13 percent to $19.4 million, up from $17.1 million a year ago, due primarily to the higher prices paid for juice fruit this year. The higher prices, however, were partially offset by a 10.3 decrease in the number of boxes harvested.

In the agricultural supply chain management segment, the company reported revenue of $6.1 million, down more than 48 percent from $11.9 million a year ago, with fewer boxes of citrus sold.

Revenue from its improved farmland, which includes sugarcane, was $10.8 million for the quarter, up more than 20 percent from $8.9 million a year ago.

Sugarcane contributed revenue of $10.5 million, compared to $8.6 million a year ago. The increase was attributed to a more than 31 percent rise in tons harvested, which was partially offset by lower prices for the crop this year.

Total operating expenses in the quarter fell by $3.8 million to $27.6 million over the year.

The company paid a second quarter cash dividend of 12 cents a share and its board recently declared a third quarter dividend of 6 cents a share.

Shares closed at $35.23 on Wednesday, up $1.44, or more than 4 percent, on Nasdaq.

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(c)2014 the Naples Daily News (Naples, Fla.)

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Source: Naples Daily News (FL)


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